Sunday, 18 November 2018

Sunday Sundries

Miscellaneous items I found of interest during the week.

Artistic works inspired by the Great Famine struggle to do it justice, but they keep the memory alive
How do you represent in film an experience as keen and painful as hunger? Director Lance Daly’s recently released film Black ‘47 – a revenge epic set during the 1840s Irish famine – is the latest attempt to depict the devastating catastrophe which left more than a million dead in Ireland in one of the worst episodes of human suffering in the 19th century. The famine’s legacy is profound: today Ireland remains the only European country with a smaller population than in the 1800s.

Digital library search preferences amongst historians and genealogists: British History Online user survey
From 2016, "The results of this survey show that genealogists are primarily interested in names of people and names of places related to their search. They do not seem to be interested in reading material, or even what the source of the material is, as long as it contains the details they are after. Searching free content only was more important to genealogists than it was to academics and casual users."
"All groups have clear preferences for searching by name and by place, and they are generally in favour of searching by the date of the subject matter. They strongly support fuzzy searching and proximity searching. Whenever possible, they prefer to conduct simple keyword searches, but they prefer advanced searching to browsing – again implying they are after snippets rather than a traditional reading experience. Being able to limit the search to predefined subsets of the collection, including by content type or by bibliographic series was popular. By contrast, they do not like to have to rely on external search engines or library catalogues, and would rather interact directly with the navigation features of the digital library."

The Catholic Church, Kin Networks and Institutional Development (pdf)
The Catholic Church’s medieval marriage policies dissolved extended kin networks and thereby fostered inclusive institutions. Longer Church exposure predicts lower cousin marriage rates; in turn, lower cousin marriage rates predict higher civicness and more inclusive institutions today.

Who are Canada’s ‘most historically significant’ women?
What does it mean to be ‘historically significant’?

Fifty Years Hence
By Winston Churchill, originally published in Strand Magazine, December 1931

And finally, congratulations to Ottawa City Archivist Paul Henry, appointed to fill a vacancy on the Board of the Canadian Council of Archives for a one year term.

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